TRENTON — The Senate Judiciary Committee today approved bill S2205 sponsored by Senate President Richard J. Codey, which would substantially increase the damage compensation for anyone found wrongfully convicted and imprisoned. The bill was originally inspired by the story of Byron Halsey, the Plainfield resident who spent two decades in prison, only to have the charges dropped in 2007 after DNA evidence proved his innocence.
“There is no way to fully compensate someone for the loss of years from their life,” said Sen. Codey (D-Essex). “In cases like Mr. Halsey’s, the world and the skills set needed have changed drastically in the last 20 years. The least we can do is provide a person with a greater cushion to acclimate to life outside of prison. This is just one small way to right a gross wrong.”